The Charlotte Hornets will travel north to take on the Boston Celtics in a Monday night NBA matchup at TD Garden in Boston. With that said, it’s a good time to check out our NBA odds series, which includes a Hornets-Celtics prediction and pick, laid out below.
Charlotte has suffered through a 6-14 start to their season, a lousy 13th place standing in the Eastern Conference. Superstar guard LaMelo Ball has played in just three games this season, which plays a large role in the team’s struggles. Charlotte went 43-39 last season.
Boston has surged to first place in the Eastern Conference with a 16-4 record, winning 12 of their last 13 (!!!). A nine-game winning streak was snapped with a loss last week, but Boston has rebounded with a current three-game winning streak. Joe Mazzulla should receive serious consideration for Coach of the Year honors.
Here are the Hornets-Celtics NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Hornets-Celtics Odds
Charlotte Hornets: +10 (-110)
Boston Celtics: -10 (-110)
Over: 225 (-110)
Under: 225 (-110)
Why The Hornets Could Cover The Spread
LaMelo Ball’s absence has loomed large for this team. In his absence, Terry Rozier leads the team with 20.5 points, dishing out 5.6 assists and pulling in 4.7 rebounds per game. Kelly Oubre Jr. is second on the team with 19.6 points, adding 5.3 rebounds and leading the team with 1.7 steals per game. Gordon Hayward has shot 38.1 percent from behind the 3-point line, averaging 16.3 points per game, but he’s out indefinitely with more injury woes. Dennis Smith Jr. and Cody Martin are also out for this injury-ravaged team.
Mason Plumlee leads the team with 9.1 rebounds, averaging 9.1 points per game as well. PJ Washington is the final Hornet to put up double-digit points, averaging 15.9 points per game, adding 4.9 rebounds while shooting 43.8 percent from the field
Obviously, given their record, Charlotte has struggled this season. On the bright side, Charlotte ranks fourth in the league with 12.6 offensive rebounds per game and 10th with 7.7 steals per game. Offense has been an issue, as Charlotte has averaged 109.4 points per game, which ranks 24th in the league. Charlotte’s defense has been pretty average, ranking 16th by allowing 114.2 points per game.
To be honest, there aren’t many reasons to expect the Hornets to keep this close, but perhaps the Celtics coast while on the second leg of a back-to-back. Jaylen Brown is currently listed as questionable after a big game Sunday, while Al Horford is out.
Why The Celtics Could Cover The Spread
Boston is a two-man show, led by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Tatum leads the team with 30.5 points, 7.9 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game, ranking second with 4.6 assists per game. Tatum is expected back in the lineup after missing Sunday’s game.
Brown ranks second with 26.1 points per game, adding 6.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game. Brown leads the team with 1.1 steals per game. If Brown suits up alongside Tatum in this one, they should have a field day.
Malcolm Brogdon ranks third on the team with 13.6 points per game, with all 16 of his appearances coming off the bench. Marcus Smart leads the team with 7.1 assists, adding 11.0 points per game. Al Horford is averaging 11.2 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, providing a key presence in the paint, but he will rest in this game. Derrick White is the sixth and final Celtic to average double-digit points, putting up 10.7 points per game on 47.7 percent shooting.
Boston has a lethal offense, leading the league by shooting 40.0 percent from behind the 3-point line and averaging 120.4 points per game. Protecting the ball is a key to the offense, with Boston turning the ball over just 13.2 times per game, the fourth-lowest total in the league. Defense has been above-average, ranking 13th by allowing 113.3 points per game.
Final Hornets-Celtics Prediction & Pick
Uh, yeah, Charlotte does not really stand a chance. Boston may get over the total by themselves (kidding, sort of).
Final Hornets-Celtics Prediction & Pick: Boston -10 (-110), over 225 (-110)